Benefits of book friendship for students

By: Suumaya Ali

You must have heard that book is man’s best friend. This is also true in the light of scientific research. According to a study, an average American household has 114 books. According to experts, 114 books in a house is a good number in every respect. The research sought to find out how books improve adolescent children’s literacy, reading fluency, numeracy, and information communication technology (ICT) skills.

In this regard, the researchers observed 160 thousand young people from 31 countries for five years. In the research, young people were asked that, ‘When you were 16 years old, how many books were there approximately in your house at that time’? (These books do not include textbooks and one meter shelf can hold about 40 books).

In the study, experts concluded that children and youth in households with 80 or more books outperformed those in homes with less reading fluency, numeracy and information communication technology skills. But there are no books. “Children who grow up in home libraries learn more in the above-mentioned areas compared to parental education, traditional education or vocational training,” the study states.

The research illustrates the power of books gap in stark terms: high school-level children in homes with a library have the same knowledge and ability in reading, math and ICT as graduate youth. There are those who have had little or no books to read in their lives.

Dr Joyna Sikora, who led the research, is from the Australian National University. “We found that children in homes with 80 to 350 books were more gifted in reading, number recognition and information communication technology,” he says. Additional difference of more than 350 books was not seen. This means that parents who want their children to benefit from a home library as much as possible should keep 350 books at home.

What is meant by a large library?

It depends on which part of the world you are from. Most books were found in Scandinavian homes. 14% of Norwegian and 13% of Swedish households had 500 or more books. However, there are some countries where the average number of books in a household was less than 80, such countries include Chile, Egypt, Italy, Singapore and Turkey. Turkey had an average of 27 books per household, Britain had an average of 143 books and Estonia had an average of 218 books.

Effects of digital media

A pertinent question may be related to the impact of the increase in digital books. However, the importance of digital in research has been neglected. “If we talk about the present time, it would be premature to say that published books have become a thing of the past.” In this regard, researchers say that the world’s largest digital libraries are currently equal to the world’s largest paper libraries. “We found in the research that the number of books in the library was also higher in households with higher digital literacy. Digital has its place, but the impact of paper books will remain in the coming times.

Why is a home library beneficial?

Researchers cite two reasons for this. The first reason is that children are introduced to books at an early age to develop a love of learning and develop long-term intellectual abilities. It is helpful and supportive in fighting big battles in professional life.

80 books cost less than a year’s tuition

According to the study, ‘university graduates who had barely any books in their homes had below average literacy levels’, proving that keeping children surrounded by books at home is the key to their future. It is the best investment. Hence, in terms of literacy, bookish children have a great advantage in the field of education. The effect of a home library is like the children have gained many years of extra education.

The study further states that parents who intend to send their children to college and university education should ensure that their children have a book environment at home from an early age to reap the maximum benefits of higher education. Provide, as it increases their chances of success in career as well as academic life.

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